Where would you build a boat in the UK?

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by mattnedgus, Sep 12, 2007.

  1. mattnedgus
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: UK

    mattnedgus Junior Member

    Hi all,

    I only recently found this forum (a relative newbie to the whole boatbuilding scene - apart from a bit of light reading!) and I've tried a brief search looking for places in the UK that I could build a yacht - unfortunately I don't have the space at home!

    I'm looking at building a wooden yacht and I've been looking at both George Buehler and James Wharram designs (trying to determine whether to go catamaran or monohull!).

    Does anyone know whereabouts in the UK you would build a yacht of say upto 35', and if so, how much might it cost to rent such a space? I imagine it would be quite expensive here compared to other countries...

    I'd be grateful if someone could point me in the right direction.

    Thanks,


    Matthew
     
  2. Bergalia
    Joined: Aug 2005
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    Location: NSW Australia

    Bergalia Senior Member

    Where would you build a boat in the UK

    Where abouts are you in the UK, Matthew ?

    In Scotland you could try asking for space along the Caledonian Basin in Inverness. There are a couple of boatbuilding yards (sheds) who would willingly offer space - failing that there is a large area of 'public' space beside the basin available to local do-it-yourself builders at a nominal rental to the local council.

    In the west (of Scotland) Oban has good space for DIY builders along the 'hard' behind the ScotRail station. Boat 'slips' are free - and public space (a couple of acres) exists to either side for building and repairs. There are a couple of small craftsmen boat-sheds nearby who for a modest fee will rent out the use of their 'specialist' machines - planers, steamers etc.

    Oh - and welcome to the forum. You've come to the right place for excellent advice from my fellow members.
     
  3. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Hi Matt always nice to welcome some English men ( I hope)

    There are some threads on this forum that discuss if a Wharram is a boat or not.

    However thats not you question was it? You should build your boat near the water and your house. Near the water for obvious reasons and near the house,-- well you never know when you need to pop back for stuff (toilet). Building 60 100 miles away will put you off and you really don't need discouragement,--on the contrary,-- encouragement, you will need buckets of it.

    Where there is water there is usually someone building a boat and probably space for two . A companion for the odd lift too is a good and safe idea. Having some one nearby to have a cup of tea with will help with the massive amounts of motivation you will be needing.

    Having done this more than once here in Thailand, driving to the boat to find you have forgotten something Is soul destroying. Had it been close,- like outside the house then I could have nibbled at the job with 1 hour tasks and probably increased productivity.
     
  4. RHP
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: Singapore

    RHP Senior Member

    Agree with Frosty, the best place to build a boat is in your backyard - zero travel time so maximum amount of time spent on the job (so to speak), you can even spend a spare 30 minutes when you have it and over the course of a couple of years you will gain so many additional hours. The money you save on petrol driving to the boatyard could offset the cost of transporting the boat to the launch place once completed.

    If you know what you´re letting yourself in for, go for it !
     
  5. Bergalia
    Joined: Aug 2005
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    Location: NSW Australia

    Bergalia Senior Member

    Where would you build a boat in the UK

    Although your advice is well meant, Frosty and RHP - you've overlooked his initial sentence.....Which is why I posed the question - whereabouts are you in the UK.

    But basically building at - or near home is the answer. Much more convenient for 'toilet/rest/food/tool storage etc'. But lacking space at home an alternative might be to rent a large garage - or a vacant factory/warehouse floor.
     
  6. mattnedgus
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: UK

    mattnedgus Junior Member

    Thanks everyone for your very warm welcome!

    I live near Sheffield, roughly centrally in the UK (I would say) so it makes it easier if I need to travel - although I agree, if I build too far from home I will probably get quickly fed up with being far from any tools or equipment that I find would be handy on particular jobs once at site!

    Scotland is closer than some of the methods I've considered for building a boat given I don't have the space at home though... I had thought about building abroad and sailing back, given how expensive everything is here in the UK - I half expect to be priced out of building a yacht (materials, rent etc) but for now I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

    After reading a bit of George Buehlers stuff, I get the impression that it can be cheap'ish' depending how, where (and maybe more importantly) when it's done.

    Anyhow, as for locations, I wasn't sure where to start! Materials and equipment I can do via the internet (if need be) but I have drawn a blank in finding the place to build - unfortunately I know no one in the industry, and I don't know of anywhere locally that might be useful for finding further information.

    So if anyone knows of anywhere between Sheffield and Nottingham (where I am potentially looking to move to) I would be grateful.

    If anyone knows people who might know other people who know places (if you got that? :) ) then that would be helpful too.

    Thanks again, Matt
     
  7. Trevlyns
    Joined: Oct 2006
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    Location: London UK

    Trevlyns Senior Citizen/Member

    First of all Mathew, let me apologize on behalf of my valued friends who have already replied, for not welcoming you to the forum - well except Frosty, perhaps, but he doesn’t really count ‘cause he’s in Thailand. :p

    You have arrived! All you could ever want, and more (or less) is here. You’re very welcome!

    I can answer on this one first hand.

    After years of procrastination/excuses, I’ve committed to a boatyard in the greater London area to build a 12 meter proa of my own design. I was considering building in my backyard but, with these quaint English houses, that would mean building in two halves and assembling (at a yard, anyway) later.

    I’m moving in on MONDAY!!!!! :D :D :D

    The yard is in Canvey Island, Essex; about 20 minutes from where I live. The basic cost is 47p per foot per week plus the governments share. I’ve rented a 12 by five meter space and that works out at £95.72 per month. Pretty good value to me, a South African with Scottish ancestry. (Sorry Bergy, granddad’s fault!)

    The yard is fully equipped and includes a slip, electricity (5 amp) and water, toilets/ablutions, a café and even a great boat shop - click here for the website. Also, type in this location (SS8 0QT) into multimaps and you’ll see it’s right at the end of the Thames and has great access for occasional sailing – up and down the East coast or a quick jaunt around the world. There are many other facilities, like a lift, transport, moorings – you name it!

    As far as trying to determine between a catamaran or monohull, do you realize you are on the brink of starting a civil war? :p This dilemma has been a part of boating ever since monohulls were invented – some two thousand years after multi’s!

    I’ll however give my humble AND PERSONAL opinion. I started, like most others, with an interest in mono’s but was converted after a talk by the old master James Wharram at a local yacht club. Basically things such as “unsinkable” and “form stability” won the day. I then designed and even started building, an 8 meter cat but was side tracked - by an item on this forum - to Proa’s. Basically, take a cat, place the second hull at the end of the first, and you have twice the boat for the same weight and sail area [true Scot, eh Max?] Well, lots of research later and a return to the drawing board will see the beginning of my dream boat - starting Monday!

    And I’ll be pleased to keep you local yokels posted.

    The very best!

    Ps I posted this after editing it all night and missed your response (above) so it may not be relevant to your area. If you're interested, however, e-mail me and I'll let you have fuller details
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2007
  8. safewalrus
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: Cornwall, England

    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Matt welcome to the dance indeed, heres the Walrus's pennyworth! Initially, and some will find this hard ot believe, I agree with Frosty!!!!! It's got to be close to home, believe you me travelling for miles to get to the boat by the time you et there you either don't want to do anything or are thinking of how (and when) you will be going home again, every minute spent not building is a minute wasted -you'll soon see! And of course aas 'Frosty ' states the number of times you want to nip back home is amazing!

    Secondly but most importantly, your in England! what are we famous for? RAIN that's what! Not as famous as Scotland but we still get a fair bit! So if you want to get this finished before you become a Grandad get the bugger inside! UNDER A ROOF IS AN ABSOLUTE MUST! Oh yes and for me (not everybody of course) sharing a yard is a good excuse to talk, useful but again you ain't working! Get a comfy "wailing chair" as reccomended by now what was that Yank called? You'll need it!

    You can build anywhere as long as you follow the rules above, cranes and lorries will get her to the water (and Sheffield ain't too far from the water)
     
  9. RHP
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: Singapore

    RHP Senior Member

    Apoologies for not welcoming you to the forum... I bow my head in shame.

    Bergalia, I realise Matthew said he didnt have any room at home but it doesnt mean that Sheffield doesn't have a spare patch of land and that he has to travel to Scotland to buildg a boat? Put yer six shooter back in yer holster.... :) or can I look foreward to points against for not reading a post properly.... just like school again at the age of 43.
     
  10. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    I read it properly, I knew he had no room !!!! Any way you could use someone elses house or some where nearby.

    Bloody Sheffield,--I am delighted that not only are you an English man but a yorkshire man too. I watched the Full Monty last night as well.

    Ok your in Yorkshire moving to ---Nottingham --but thats way south?

    What Im trying to say and I will get round to it now--is that if you have time to burn ,-like retired,-- move to Thailand for a couple of years have a ball,--- and let the unbelievable experienced wooden boat builders build it for you at a fraction of the price while you sit under a palm tree with a rum and coke and a bird massaging your shoulders.

    This would be your office and you could direct things from there. Sorry but England sucks in comparison at this kind of thing.

    Joking aside you should give this some serious consideration.
     
  11. Landlubber
    Joined: Jun 2007
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    Location: Brisbane

    Landlubber Senior Member

    Matthew,

    Again, welcome to the forum, but may I respectfully ignore your question on where to build, and suggest that you seriously decide what it is you are going to build, long before you worry about where to build it.

    What is your purpose for building a boat? Cruising, live aboard, local mucking about, or because (like many of us here) you are a masochist and cannot help yourself, and have the urge to build.

    Frosty has a very good idea of boatbuilding if you just need to get it out of your system. But do not sit under the coconut tree drinking pina coladas, you may end up like him (de nutz fall from de treeze).

    If you are free to move (and even if you are not, think about it), it certainly would be a lot cheaper to build in Asia. Materials are abundant for common boatbuilding, labour is cheap when you need a hand, and if cruising the South Seas is your dream, well you are half way there!

    But most of all, enjoy the experience. There are a lot of very knowledgable people on this site, like everywhere in life, take it with a pinch of salt.
     
  12. RHP
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: Singapore

    RHP Senior Member

    Frosty, what boatyards would you recommend in Thailand for a boat in the 35-40´range, any links etc..? Are they better at wood construction than GRP or steel, alu etc.. whats the SP?
     
  13. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Every sea town or up rivers have boat yards. There are hundreds of them.

    2 that I know of that are very foreigner friendly are Ratanatchi boat yard, Phuket or PSS ship yard, Satun. These are set up with European shower blocks and translators.

    If you google those you should get some idea. PSS is where they are completely overhauling the 'Cariad' a 100 year old British yacht. Theres a web site for that too.
     
  14. safewalrus
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: Cornwall, England

    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Don't need to go too far away, the way I hear it, theres a fine piece of land awaiting use in Sheffield (down Brammell lane way I think it is! Well it ain't used very often and if you get the right bit (between the away goalposts) you won't be disturbed at all!!!
     

  15. keith66
    Joined: Sep 2007
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    Location: Essex UK

    keith66 Senior Member

    Hey Trevlyns, you must be talking about Dauntless boatyard! look me up i am the chairman of the rowing club based there, i also am a proanaut!
     
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